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Friday, March 31, 2006

Fidel Castro Rumored Dead


Across the blogosphere right now are reports coming in that Fidel Castro is dead, then again some say it is just a rumor. And this isn't so. Cuba denies that he is dead, and produced a picture of him to prove otherwise.

So what are the chances he is really dead?

I would not bet the bank on it, but if he were actually dead we could expect the Cubans to deny it as long as they could.

Regime change can be a nasty business in Communist countries; and if Castro did die, they would try to conceal at as long as possible. In a sense, its like playing king of the mountain, they would want to make sure they were secure at the top, before they let others know.

During the cold war, the first indications that a dictator had either died or been disposed was sad music played on their international radio bands. When Mao Tse-tung died the announcement of his death was preceded by solemn music. Although, I cannot find accounts of this on the internet I remember distinctly.

Here is one account I found about Stalin's death:

"The news of Stalin's death had just been released to the outside world by Moscow's foreign services. Now, surely, was the moment for the Russians to be told. But they were not told anything. Solemn orchestral music brimmed out of the loudspeaker.

"As the customary news bulletins failed to materialise there were those, I am sure, who were still hoping against hope. The dread word had not been uttered yet. A crisis perhaps - but surely not death!"

"At 2.55 the music ceased. Then came the bells. And then the majestic strains of the Soviet national anthem, which replaced the Internationale during the war. The broad melody swept the vast expanses of Russia, of which it is intended to be descriptive. It penetrated into the little huts in the mountain settlements of Central Asia. And far in the North, where the snow and ice never thaw, it was heard by the camp guards who had just come back into the warmth of the guardroom, having been relieved by their comrades."

I wonder what the music now is coming from that small island 90 miles from Florida?

1 Comments:

At 10:10 AM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Interesting post, Bob. Have you ever seen Moon over Parador with Richard Dreyfus. He is an actor who happens to look like the countries dictator and the dictator dies. It's a good movie. I haven't seen it in years.

You are right, if Castro has died, they will keep that secret as long as they can. Keep us posted!

 

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